Archive for August 2014
I personally like to read about Good Witches stories; ya, just those good, nice, may be funny but definitely not the scary one. And here is one from a Swiss writer Evelyn Hasler, called 香草女巫 “Die Hexe Lakritze”.
It’s about a young witch called Licorice. Yes, she got her name because she loves anything that is made out of licorice, such as licorice cake, licorice drink. Now, not every witch is powerful. Licorice is not one, as she doesn’t have a bloom. Everyday she has to wake up at 3am to walk a long long way to her school. Until one day, she learnt a spell to create a dragon ….
I enjoy reading this book, going to the witches school together with Licorice, flying together with her in her new redwood bloom.
The book also has very beautiful illustration. It’s done by Ulrike Mühlhoff.
It’s very refreshing and a nice read in a peaceful evening.
As I shared before, I like to look for Chinese story books which are translation / originated from foreign countries (especially those from non-English speaking one). My thinking: only the good one will be translated. Let me share a few good one which I like.
This one “L’incredibile storia di Lavinia”, is an Italian novel for children, written by famous author Bianca Pitzorno. The book is a modern version of Hans Christian Anderson Classic: “The Little Match Girl”, plus some essence from “Lord of the Ring“, and a little suspense set in a cold Milan, Italy.
It all started in one freezing cold Christmas night, where the little match girl, Lavinia, thought she might not make it, then a strange fairy appeared. The fairy gave her a ring that seemed insignificant, but in reality, it has a magical power: if you look intently at something, turning the ring around your finger, it instantly turns into……… poop. Yap, ‘poop’ it is.
At first I also thought it’s a bit gross, but I couldn’t resist turning the pages to see what happened next and how this ring changed Lavinia’s life.
My rating: Good and something I would recommend for school library.
This is a nice article (http://best.parenting.com.tw/blogger_article.php?w=537) from a single mom, sharing about her thoughts, after a conversation with her 4 years old daughter about single parent. She knew it’s hard to explain to a child, “Why there are people who don’t love my Mummy?”
“Not everyone in this world loves you.” This fact everyone knows it. But, when it really happens to us, especially the person who doesn’t love us is someone who was once or still very important to us, that pain will make us forget about this very fact in life: “Not everyone in this world loves you.”.
Once I read somewhere, you must always tell your child that you love him/her, let him/her be confident that “he/she is being loved, and he/she deserves to be loved”; so that when they grow up and if ever caught in situation of being bullied, deep down in their heart, they will always remember this feeling of being loved and therefore not easily get defeated.
Though I found it sound quite logical, but there was something non-agreeable which I was unable to tell at that time, until I saw the confused face of my little one, then only I figured out. “Letting children know they are being loved” is just at a level where we are letting others’ love to determine our self-worth. We should be stronger, we should be: “I know my own value/self-worth, and it has nothing to do with others love me or not.“
Then the writer shared about her sad experience, being dumped while she was pregnant. And during that time, she did a lot of reconcilation and reflection of her past. And she managed to figure out the below.
People change, love change. May be you are just not-loved “very innocently“, or may be not (which is something you need to think about more deeply); either way, this ‘not being loved’ incident is just another matter happened in your life. Like any other matters, where it affects you, and depending on how you see it and handle it, it change your life.
I don’t even want to just tell her, “even if someone don’t love you any more, it doesn’t reduce your value/self-worth“; but more on “if someone don’t love you, how you handle this, determine the kind of person you will change into“.
I kept this article on my desktop, read it over and over again, trying to remind myself everyday, BE PATIENT, BE PATIENT, and BE PATIENT.
Printed out a copy to share with my hubby, as he has been ‘famous’ for his ‘locomotive’ character (“火车头” in Cantonese to describe being very very impatient).
The line “insist they joyfully and immediately do the right thing, every time” really hit straight to the point.
Now addicted to this book, 《放学后才是关键》 “The Keys is What’s After School Hour”. Just started and I quite like it.
Let me introduce the book later, and here is a nice story I would like to shared:
A story I told my children:
“My friend has two cousin brothers, one is brought up in Taiwan, another one in US. The two cousin brothers played chess. The Taiwan cousin lost and he said, ‘Not fair! Let’s play another round.‘”
At that point, my children found it sounded familiar, as they also always said the same thing.
“Guess what did the US cousin say when he lost?” I asked.
“He said, ‘Wow, you are good! You are clever!” answered I.
The Taiwan cousin was not able to react like US cousin, because our education didn’t teach our children to look for and appreciate the good in others, therefore the child could not accept when other won.
Something very nice I read today, which I told myself, die die I must write it down. A sharing from a Taiwan parenting site: 孩子，你不是父母的驕傲 (click to go to that page).
First, the writer talked about teaching by model. After becoming a parent, she watched out her behaviour and actions. But later, she realised, we are just human. There is no perfect human, and definitely no perfect parents, no matter how hard we try.
And I like the bad habit example she gave:
My husband likes to eat junk food, watch TV; I like to play handphone games, and drink some wine. All this shortcomings have been in our lives for a long time, it’s impossible to change to dislike tv, junk food, handphone games and wine just because we have children. And it’s also impossible for us to forbid our children from doing that, but we do it at their back, after they are asleep (this is called cheating).
We all have weaknesses, this is human nature; and our children will also have their own path, just like us. We saw something not good from our parents, and then we tell ourselves not to behave like that when we grow up. This is a path every child will go through.
Then she talked about parents without they themselves knowing it, taking too much pride of their children achievement, from young and even till adult.
“Oh, my son can sleep straight till morning since he was two months old”, “oh, my child is not picky when comes to food,”. When the children grow older, it will be being number 1 in class, being number 1 in sport, talented in art, talented in music; or even getting a job, getting married, etc; all these the parents feel proud of their children.
But then, what if the child come in last in school, not able to study no talent, no significant achievement in life, should we be proud of them too? Do we have confident to be so ?
And I like this the most:
Compare to parent whose kid get number 1, I admire and salute the parent whose kid gets the last place most. Because they have to face a lot more challenge, questioning and pressure from their senior/elder family members.
And the following also something I like, except one or two parts which I don’t 100% agree.
She said: “whether a child is successful or fail in their life, it has nothing to do with the parents, if the parents have tried their best.” [mm….]
Anyway, what followed that sentences, is a knock on my head – me, a ‘kancheong’, ‘kiasu’ mum.
They will be just like us, they will fail in something, they will get disappointed, they will get sick, they might be jilted, or even be bullied by others. If we can go through these, so do they.
[mm….. the bully part … ]
Whatever becomes to them, is their own creation, not us. Parents need not overestimate oneself, that they blame themselves if the child ended up in wrong path, and take credit if the child turns out to be very successful in life.
The only thing parents can take pride of, is regardless of success or failure, we love them the same.
Ya, how true. We cannot shield them from failure and disappointment, it’s part of our daily life, up and down, get knocked down, climb back up again. And yes, we will get over it some way. So why so kiasu, when the ‘su’ (losing) is also part of life?
Now I think deeper of it, isn’t we, who take away the option to fail, the option to be at the losing end, from our children; that force these children to the dead end of their life? Look at those suicide cases, aren’t we, the adult and society, have created an unrealistic, twisted kind of definition of life, a very very narrow one.
… sigh …
And the last part, the writer gave me a brand new view of things we praise our children.
We are praising children for things they should do well, for example, eating, sleeping, doing homework, get first place in exam, doing household chores. We have been making them think by doing all these, they deserve a praise. Therefore, they strive to have their effort recognized, but this is not right!
A child should learn to be responsible for his/her own life.
He eats well for his own health; he doesn’t want to eat, then be prepared to be hungry later.
Help in household chores is his responsibility, not ‘helping’ mother. [this one I like 😛 ]
Do his homework and exam well, that is for his own good, not for us.And whether he does his homework or not, it shouldn’t be our concern.If he didn’t do the homework, he would be scolded by teacher in school, that will be his business, we need not chase after him, remind him, force him (else, parenting will be too tiring !)
mm.. so teachers play a role here also, must scold children who didn’t do homework. Ya, it’s common in Chinese school.